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Why There’s No National Lockdown
In the United States, COVID-19 cases top 120,000—now the most of any country in the world—and deaths surpass 2,000. Many states are acting to contain viral spread through mass closures of businesses and orders to stay inside the home. However, in the absence of a national-level order, such measures are not uniform across the whole country, and Americans can still travel from one area to another—potentially carrying COVID-19 from “hot zones” such as New York and Seattle to low-risk areas.Contrast that with China, once the epicenter of COVID-19 (the novel coronavirus disease), which on March 19 reported no new locally transmitted cases of the disease for the first time since the onset of the pandemic. Just a month ago, thousands of new cases were appearing in mainland China each day, and China’s Hubei province was considered the highest COVID-19 transmission zone on the planet. China’s success is the result of aggressive, far-reaching measures: About 60 million people were locked down in the cordon sanitaire, during which movement was restricted in and out of Wuhan and the larger Hubei province. Many people infected with or exposed to COVID-19 in these same areas were forcibly removed from the population and put into isolation centers for weeks. Public transportation was shut down. Armed guards, citizen informers, and high-tech surveillance helped ensure compliance with mass quarantines. The trade-off, of course, was between containing a fast-moving novel virus and wholesale violation of personal freedoms, including movement and privacy.[Read: How the pandemic will end]Other countries, including Western democracies such as Italy, Spain, and France, are following China’s lead, locking down entire regions or the nation as a whole. India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, decreed a 21-day lockdown for 1.3 billion people, the largest cordon sanitaire in world history.Meanwhile in the U.S., where COVID-19 cases are skyrocketing, the approach has been more piecemeal. Many states and localities have ordered businesses, schools, and workplaces to close and limited the number of people that can gather in public. At least 24 states have directed all residents to shelter in place, or stay home. But other states have allowed businesses such as bars and restaurants to remain open to the public, or let their school districts decide whether to close schools. Why has America failed to take more aggressive national action?President Donald Trump has expressed inconsistent intentions for a national, or even regional, lockdown. On March 24, eager to avoid further economic and social harms arising from business closures and other key physical-distancing measures, the president stated that the U.S. should be open for business by April 12. Finally swayed by warnings from public-health experts that lifting restrictions too soon could cause far more deaths, he has now extended that timeline to the end of April. Then on March 28, Trump said he might order a two-week quarantine of New York, New Jersey, and parts of Connecticut. Such an order would have restricted the movement of millions of Americans, even in areas with low COVID-19 risk, and could have backfired if it incited mass migrations. However, faced with questions on legal enforceability, Trump backed away from the mass quarantine, and instead the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a domestic-travel advisory for the area, asking residents of the three states to refrain from nonessential domestic travel for 14 days.[Francis Fukuyama: The thing that determines a country’s resistance to the coronavirus]Even if the president desired to take stronger action, America’s national-level response would be hampered in part by its federalist system. Constitutional authority for ordering major public-health interventions, such as mass quarantines and physical distancing, lies primarily with U.S. states and localities via their “police powers”—a drastic difference from the national authorities of countries such as China and Italy. Still, the federal government does have narrow authorities to reduce the spread of COVID-19, which are most expansive at the U.S. border. Trump has, for example, banned the entry of foreign nationals who have traveled in many of the world’s regions, including China and most of Europe, within 14 days before their arrival to the U.S. More recently, the president closed America’s borders with both Mexico and Canada. Congress has exclusive constitutional power to regulate interstate commerce and could restrict travel among the states, but the president cannot, unless Congress provides statutory authority. The CDC, as an executive agency under the Department of Health and Human Services, holds limited regulatory authority to issue quarantines, but lacks the authority to ban interstate travel outright. Even during the Zika outbreak, the CDC only recommended that pregnant women avoid travel to southern Florida, but did not issue any order.Within states, the president has little to no power to act, because of states’ sovereign rights to exercise their police powers. The president cannot direct a governor to implement or withdraw an order to stay at home or to close businesses such as bars, restaurants, and theaters. Even in a national emergency, governors retain primary authority to control the spread of an infectious disease within their states. However, as governors’ powers extend only to their states’ borders, they can limit intrastate movement (through travel restrictions, mass quarantines, or isolation orders), but cannot restrict interstate travel.When governments, federal or state, do have the authority to order mass quarantines, constitutional and ethical principles—as well as American values—require that these orders be balanced against long-standing safeguards of personal liberty and privacy. Such orders would impose extreme limitations on individual liberties including the right to travel and associate. Their enforcement could entail invasions on personal privacy, such as government use of electronic surveillance to monitor individuals’ movements. Even so, courts would likely uphold containment orders against individuals that are based on sound science (including testing positive for the virus) and are proportionate. Individuals hold liberties, such as freedom of movement, only up to the point where they pose a risk to others.[Read: Red and blue America agree that now is the time to violate the Constitution]However, large-scale quarantines based on group determinations would be constitutionally troublesome because they are inherently overbroad. Orders must also be executed via procedural due process (providing individuals with sufficient notice and a hearing), and through the least restrictive means necessary (e.g., home quarantines preferred over other settings). In nonemergencies, the Supreme Court has further required “clear and convincing evidence” for civil confinement of individuals. While emergency declarations, and the urgent need to control COVID-19 before others needlessly die, may skew the balance toward public-health authority, they do not altogether dispense with these long-standing safeguards.The requirement of public-health authorities to use the least restrictive measure to achieve their objective also means that rather than using draconian measures to enforce a nationwide mandatory lockdown, states and localities can institute a “virtual lockdown,”—through a myriad of state and locally generated closures, assembly limits, and travel restrictions. Most people, moreover, will voluntarily remain at home. A stay-at-home recommendation, along with restrictions on nonessential business activities and large gatherings, could accomplish much of the desired result: reduced contact between infected and uninfected persons to stop COVID-19 transmission. However, to control the spread of COVID-19 for the long run, continued compliance with social distancing will be essential in the weeks, and possibly even months, ahead.If Americans are to comply with directives for self-quarantine, self-isolation, social distancing, and limited travel over the indefinite future, governments must fulfill their reciprocal duties to make compliance safe and feasible. First, a trusted and transparent source of information is needed to regularly convey accurate information on the known risks, unknown risks, and what is being done to learn more. Second, physical distancing must be accompanied by access to key resources, such as testing, treatment, food, and medicines, especially tending to the needs of the vulnerable (the elderly, people who have a disability, or people with low income). Third, Americans staying home in self-quarantine, or to care for kids out of school, must be assured that they will not suffer from job or income losses.All of this is to say that a coercive lockdown by the federal government may not be legal, but it is also not what is needed to keep the American people safe from COVID-19. To make lawful restrictions and voluntary social distancing work, however, the country must see real leadership, and have confidence that its needs, both bodily and economic, will be met. Absent that, many thousands more will needlessly die—the unfortunate path we seem to be heading down.
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theatlantic.com
Iran reports 3,000 new cases of coronavirus in one day
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edition.cnn.com
'The Last Dance' Release Date: LeBron James, NBA Twitter Reacts to ESPN Moving Michael Jordan Documentary to April
The 10-part documentary series chronicles Jordan's final season with the Chicago Bulls, which ended with a sixth NBA title for him and the franchise.
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newsweek.com
US stocks are poised for a strong day: March 30, 2020
The stock market's roller coaster week continues as investors continue to worry about the coronavirus outbreak. Here are the latest updates on the Dow, S&P 500, companies and more.
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edition.cnn.com
'Fortnite' Update 12.30 Adds Kingsman Umbrella & Crash Pad - Patch Notes
"Fortnite" update 12.30 has been released, bringing the Crash Pad and Kingsman Umbrella to Battle Royale. Get the unofficial patch notes here.
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newsweek.com
Sen. Bill Cassidy pitches online registry for recovered coronavirus patients
Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., has proposed the creation of an online registry that would log recovered COVID-19 patients who have likely developed immunity to the coronavirus in an effort to speed up the return to normal life in the U.S.
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foxnews.com
'Deeply embarrassed' Jack Grealish apologizes for ignoring UK government lockdown advice
A leading English Premier League footballer says he is "deeply embarrassed" as he apologized for breaching UK government coronavirus lockdown guidance after telling fans to "stay home."
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edition.cnn.com
Why Pharrell is tone-deaf
Multimillionaire Pharrell Williams gets slammed for asking people to donate to hospitals. Drake’s all in his feelings about his family, and shares the first photos of his son. And Mark Wahlberg and Mario Lopez are bro-ing out at the gym while we’re quarantined with our Goya-can weights. Here’s a closer look at today’s stories: Pharrell...
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nypost.com
How to Talk About the Coronavirus
As the coronavirus pandemic explodes, so does our exposure to a virulent combination of misinformation, disinformation, and hackneyed amateur analysis. We are all trying to make sense of what this means and what to do.I’ve spent 15 years as a science communicator—digging deep into complicated research on topics outside my own expertise, figuring out what we know, and then deciding what needs to be shared and how to do that effectively. Sometimes, that has led to anxiety, nightmares, and fights about science with people I love. Perhaps those experiences sound familiar.[Read: The four possible timelines for life returning to normal]We are all science communicators now: COVID-19 has conscripted us. The way we seek out and share information can either make things better or make them worse. Here’s some of what I’ve learned along the way about how to communicate science effectively.First, start where you are. You are already an influential source of information for the people closest to you. Even if they vehemently disagree with you, your family and friends likely pay more attention to you, and think more highly of you, than do people whom you’ve never met.Researchers who study the flow of information through networks talk about strong and weak social ties—those formed by close-knit networks with frequent interactions, and those built of more distant and less frequent interactions. Both are crucially important, and weak ties can be surprisingly important. Being an effective science communicator requires understanding your identity as a messenger. You are most effective when culture, context, and identity align. I’ll never forget first hearing about the idea of being a “nerd node of trust”—the person friends and family turn to for technical expertise. It’s a powerful antidote to fruitless agonizing over audience reach. You already have reach. Focus your energy on your own close community first.Second, pick your battles. On Thursday, I watched Steph Curry’s Instagram Live chat with Anthony Fauci. “Information, as we all know, is power,” Curry told his viewers. Yes, and here’s the catch: Just throwing information at people is also a powerful way of frustrating and alienating them.People are cognitive misers. We all tend not to expend mental energy when possible; we are subject to profound cognitive biases; and we rely on heuristics to help us make decisions quickly. By offering us patterns in chaos and meaning in randomness, biases and heuristics reduce the complexity of our judgments. And they almost always do so in line with our existing beliefs, values, and identities, and without our conscious awareness. Humans will go to tremendous lengths to preserve our dignity and social status.[Read: The social-distancing culture war has begun]Science communication becomes especially challenging when it deals with politically polarized topics. Criticism of a disastrous press conference, for example, can feel like an attack on an elected official, and therefore on anyone who voted for them. Identity threats trigger identity-protective behaviors such as motivated reasoning. If you want to argue politics, argue politics! This is never as important as when the stakes are so high. But don’t conflate that with science communication.Identify and affirm your shared values and identities first, and only then ask your audience to submit to the unpleasantness of cognitive dissonance. Notice how this is so much easier within your own community. I may hate the politician my dad once voted for, but I love my dad, and he loves me. We can build on that.Third, avoid unforced errors. I’ve learned that many of my instinctive responses are counterproductive. When I encounter a false rumor, I want to correct it; when I see people sharing a dangerous piece of advice, I want to condemn it. But repeating misinformation inadvertently reinforces it. Dangerous ideas are contagious: Think of this as information hygiene to limit their viral spread. In one of the most highly cited peer-reviewed papers on correcting misinformation, scientists recommend including pre-exposure warnings, fostering healthy skepticism, and providing simple, repeated rebuttals that focus on the correct information.Try saying, for example, “I’m worried that you might have been hearing reports about medicines and the coronavirus. Some of the information out there is very wrong.” That way, you’ll open the door for a conversation about a variety of topics that have been in the news lately, and give yourself space to figure out what the first priorities for the conversation should be. I won’t know where my science communication can do the most good if I don’t know what my audience is focused on or worried about. Besides, starting a conversation from a place of humility and genuine curiosity is always healthy and helpful behavior.Fourth, be as honest and transparent as possible. We can’t read every paper, track every development, perform our own analyses, or represent the complete body of knowledge we now have about COVID-19. Take comfort in the complexity of the research. Seek out and respect the expertise of those with domain-specific knowledge. Revise your positions as new information accumulates. Accept and acknowledge the limits of your knowledge, even as you work to expand it. Allow yourself to step away when it becomes too much, so that you can step back in when you are needed most.[Read: How the pandemic will end]These steps will help you improve, and check the quality of, your own knowledge, as well as enhance your credibility when you try to communicate it. Inviting your audiences to explore a topic with you and equipping them with the tools to interrogate the process respect their agency and autonomy. Science communication should be about service, not self-importance.I’ve been grappling with each of these challenges as I write. There is still a massive disconnect between theory and practice in science. I caught myself downloading dozens of papers to get a single sentence right. I questioned whether I should link directly to those academic contributions behind their paywalls or to the popular journalism interpreting their results. I questioned whether I am the right person to write this, whether anyone would read it, and if it would genuinely matter that you are.But it has never been so important to get people to pay attention to hard truths, and perhaps it has never has been as difficult to do that as it is right now. The key is to confront the most brutal facts of reality unflinchingly, while maintaining an unwavering hope for the future. This is called the Stockdale paradox, after Vice Admiral James Stockdale, who survived years of torture as a prisoner of war. In a conversation with Jim Collins, Stockdale later attributed his survival to the fact that he “never lost faith in the end of the story,” unlike those “who said, ‘We’re going to be out by Christmas.’ And Christmas would come, and Christmas would go. Then they’d say, ‘We’re going to be out by Easter.’ And Easter would come, and Easter would go. And then Thanksgiving, and then it would be Christmas again. And they died of a broken heart.”We will not be out of this pandemic by Easter either. But I have not lost faith in the end of the story, and you can help us get there.
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theatlantic.com
NBA bust Darko Milicic responds to Carmelo Anthony's comment on live stream: 'We are not kids, we are adults'
Former No. 2 overall NBA draft pick Darko Milicic essentially told Carmelo Anthony and Dwyane Wade to grow up on Saturday after the two of the stars from the 2003 class took jabs at the former Detroit Pistons forward.
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foxnews.com
The Average Woman Loses $407,760 Because of the Gender Wage Gap Over Her Lifetime
Equal Pay Day falls on March 31 this year. At the current rate of progress in the U.S., women won't catch up to men when it comes to how much they are paid until 2059. Here's a by-the-numbers look at the persistent gender wage gap.
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newsweek.com
15,000 LA high school students absent from online learning since coronavirus shut down schools
Some 15,000 Los Angeles high school students have not participated in any online learning since schools were forced to shut down in wake of coronavirus, new data shows.
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foxnews.com
Empire State Building shines flashing red to honor medical workers amid coronavirus
Each night through Thursday, the light will sync up to Jay-Z and Alicia Keys' "Empire State of Mind." The flashing light was met with mixed response.        
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usatoday.com
Coronavirus live updates: Amazon workers to strike; Illinois to make conference center a hospital; US deaths surge past 3,100
U.S. deaths surged past 3,100 as states across America pleaded for help Tuesday and took drastic action to try to stem the flood of coronavirus cases.        
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usatoday.com
Massie calls for Congress to hold virtual public hearings on coronavirus
Massie last week forced over 200 House members to return to Washington, D.C. to pass the coronavirus relief package after he announced he would try to block a voice vote on the measure.
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foxnews.com
World champion boxer suspended following domestic violence 'advice' video
British boxer Billy Joe Saunders has had his license suspended following a social media video in which he seemingly advocated domestic violence.
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edition.cnn.com
For Trump, Power Is for Self-Preservation Only
Seldom, if ever, has a president claimed so much power—and then turned around and done so little with it. Just a few months ago, when Donald Trump was being impeached in the House and tried in the Senate, he and his legal team insisted that presidential power is all but unlimited. Alan Dershowitz, one of Trump’s legal advisers, suggested that if the president believes that his staying in power is best for the country, he cannot be impeached for the actions he takes in hopes of being reelected. So complete is the president’s power, Trump’s legal team insisted at the time, that he can direct federal employees to defy a congressional subpoena—even after they stop working for the White House.These arguments grew out of what constitutional scholars call the unitary-executive theory, which has been cited to justify ever more expansive powers in the office of the presidency. But with his halting response to the coronavirus, Trump has turned the unitary-executive theory on its head.[Peter Wehner: The Trump presidency is over]This theory holds that the president has inherent, implicit authority under Article II of the Constitution that cannot be constrained by Congress—including exclusive power to control all subordinates. In the words of the law professor John Yoo, the author of the infamous Department of Justice memos rationalizing torture under the presidency of George W. Bush, presidents need unitary executive power “to defend the country in times of crisis and emergency.” Proponents of the theory also justify unfettered presidential power as fostering accountability. The public knows where the buck stops if it stops unflinchingly with the president, and it can vote accordingly in every fourth November.Under Trump, though, enhanced presidential powers under the unitary-executive theory have produced neither robust protections for the American people during the COVID-19 pandemic nor accountability for his actions since taking office. After weeks of stalling and misinformation, Trump has declined to use his far-reaching presidential powers to take all necessary steps to protect the public from widespread suffering and death in this unprecedented global health crisis. He has also been unequivocal that “I don’t take responsibility at all” for the federal government’s failures over coronavirus testing, affirming his personal impulse to shirk accountability—not accept it—in the face of criticism.What could Trump be doing with his unitary-executive power to help the nation in this time of crisis? For starters, he could have used the precious weeks of February to marshal widespread testing, which we now know would have saved countless lives, instead of falsely pretending that he had the problem under control. But even in this late moment, at least three things come immediately to mind: Mandate increased domestic production of necessary equipment, comprehensively manage the supply chain for medical equipment, and order everyone in the United States to stay home while the first wave of illness crashes over the U.S. medical system—offering it a fighting chance to stay alive and maybe even catch up with the rate of infection, illness, and death.Late last week, after weeks of intensifying pressure, Trump finally ordered General Motors to prioritize the production of ventilators, pursuant to his Korean War–era powers under the Defense Production Act. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported the first U.S. case of COVID-19 on January 21, more than nine weeks ago. Although better than nothing, the ventilator-production order might have come too late to save the lives that could have been saved if the ventilator count were higher to date.[Fred Milgrim: A New York doctor’s warning]The United States now has more confirmed infections than any other country on the planet, with no end in sight. Supply-chain intermediaries are capitalizing on the crisis, gouging prices and forcing states and hospitals to compete with one another for protective material and other lifesaving medical supplies. The federal stockpile of equipment is insufficient, with states and health-care professionals complaining that the Trump administration is not delivering promised supplies. Calls from Congress that Trump use the DPA to hasten the production and purchase of millions of N95 masks and other needed equipment for medical personnel and broadly implement a national, coordinated system of disseminating supplies have so far gone unheeded. Beyond approving the GM order, the most Trump has done on this front is to delegate DPA authority to Alex Azar, the secretary of health and human services—presumably for use at some point—and put Peter Navarro, an economic adviser who currently heads an obscure trade-policy office, in charge of government-business coordination.On January 31, Azar issued a statement that legally triggered the Public Health Service Act, a 1944 statute that affords the president broad power to mandate and enforce nationwide quarantines. Trump hasn’t used that power either, despite irrefutable evidence that minimizing physical contact is crucial to slowing the virus, as countries like China, Germany, and South Korea have shown by invoking such measures to “flatten” their curves. He threatened Saturday to impose a quarantine in the New York City area, but did not follow through.Even as Trump has largely declined to use his unitary-executive authority to combat COVID-19, he remains stout in his defense of perceived constitutional powers to ignore Congress and thus thwart his own accountability to the public. In a rare stroke of bipartisanship, Congress passed and Trump signed into law a much-needed $2 trillion relief bill for coronavirus aid. The statute provides $500 billion to the Treasury Department for loans and loan guarantees for states, municipalities, and eligible U.S. businesses. It also creates an Office of the Special Inspector General for Pandemic Recovery and a congressional oversight commission to review how federal agencies implement the program. The president has the power to appoint the special inspector general, who must file reports and coordinate efforts with Congress.In his statement accompanying his signing of the bill into law, Trump noted that the relief law authorizes the special inspector general to “request information from other government agencies” and requires that person “to report to Congress ‘without delay’ any refusal of such a request that ‘in the judgment of the Special Inspector General’ is unreasonable.” He also noted that the statute conditions federal agencies’ spending or reallocation of funds on consultation with or approval of Congress. In his signing statement, Trump announced that “my administration will continue the practice of treating provisions like these as advisory and nonbinding.”Although prior presidents have used signing statements in controversial ways—particularly during George W. Bush’s War on Terror—Trump’s contemptuous approach to any legislative or judicial oversight whatsoever should make even supporters of the unitary-executive theory shudder. Trump is calling himself a “wartime president” without acting as such. With billions of federal taxpayer dollars newly flooding into the administration for COVID-19 assistance, he is treating Congress as utterly impotent once lawmakers hand off massive powers to federal agencies—which, despite being placed within the president’s chain of command, were set up by Congress in the first place. A unitary executive cannot have it both ways—wielding entrenched and unaccountable power for the sake of self-preservation, but sloughing it off when it comes to protecting the nation from devastation.[Read: Red and blue America agree that now is the time to violate the Constitution]Throughout Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation and during the impeachment process, Trump’s legal team relied on notions of unlimited executive power to evade accountability. But now that the public needs a steady, powerful leader to steer us through this terrifying and deadly storm, Trump is telling state governors who are desperate for basic, lifesaving medical supplies that “you can get it yourself.”One could argue, of course, that philosophical consistency is a frequent casualty of major crises across the political spectrum. Many Democratic officials and left-leaning commentators have savaged Trump both for his failure to mount a unified national effort against the coronavirus and dictate terms to private companies and, just this past weekend, for dangling the very opposite suggestion of a federally imposed, tri-state quarantine to slow the national spread of the virus from the New York area.Yet the emergency powers that states have been begging Trump to deploy are not merely legal aspirations. Nor do they hinge on whether one accepts or rejects the unitary-executive theory. Congress has already specifically authorized presidents, in moments of national emergency, to take the kind of decisive steps that Trump has shown such reluctance to take now. Trump being Trump, he continues to exercise the powers of his office in self-interested ways, conditioning states’ access to federal help on obeisance to him personally. “It’s a two-way street” he told Fox News last Tuesday. “They have to treat us well, also. They can’t say, ‘Oh, gee, we should get this, we should get that.’” On Friday, he said he had instructed Vice President Mike Pence not to communicate with governors who have not been “appreciative” of the administration’s COVID-19 efforts. “Don’t call that woman in Michigan,” he said at a news conference regarding his directive to Pence. He was referring to Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer. That same Friday, she was dealing with an increase of 801 new cases in the state—the biggest one-day jump in the country so far. (The White House subsequently issued a disaster declaration for Michigan, making it eligible for more federal aid.)[Read: How the pandemic will end]As applied by Trump, therefore, the unitary-executive theory has produced the worst of both worlds: a would-be autocrat with absolute power who insists on complete obedience and retaliates if he doesn’t get it—while also blinking at the dire needs of the people he was elected to represent.During the House Judiciary Committee’s proceedings on impeachment, the Stanford Law School professor Pamela Karlan spoke these words: Imagine living in a part of Louisiana or Texas that’s prone to devastating hurricanes and flooding. What would you think if you lived there and your governor asked for a meeting with the president to discuss getting disaster aid that Congress has provided for? What would you think if that president said, “I would like you to do us a favor? I’ll meet with you, and send the disaster relief, once you brand my opponent a criminal.” Wouldn’t you know in your gut that such a president has abused his office? That he’d betrayed the national interest, and that he was trying to corrupt the electoral process? Heard today, these words are chilling.
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theatlantic.com
The kitchen ritual getting my family and me through the pandemic
Whether it's evoking early 20th century immigrants who baked bread and built lasting communities or giving her family a birthday cake and a reason to celebrate during Covid-19 social distancing, Vanessa Hua's sourdough starter -- a tiny bit of yeast -- is giving her constancy during a time of unfathomable chaos and fear, she writes.
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edition.cnn.com
Drink vodka to 'poison the virus': Dubious advice from political strongmen
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edition.cnn.com
Immigration lawyers sue feds over in-person virus hearings risks
They want in-person immigration hearings replaced with remote one until the pandemic ends and remote ways to communicate with immigrant clients.
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cbsnews.com
Kids in foster care? Coronavirus prompts courts to halt family visits, dealing harsh blow.
Dependency courts nationwide cancel hearings and suspend face-to-face family visits for foster kids over coronavirus concerns.      
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usatoday.com
Small businesses fear they won't survive the pandemic
Many small businesses, who employ almost half of the American workforce, are on the brink of losing it all. CNN's Kyung Lah reports.
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edition.cnn.com
Blue cities and their red states are dividing over coronavirus
The struggle to contain the coronavirus pandemic is opening a new front in the long-running conflict between blue cities and red states.
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edition.cnn.com
Post-Soviet president: Vodka and saunas can fight virus
Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has shrugged off concerns about the novel coronavirus, telling his people that hockey, vodka and banya -- a traditional sauna -- are the best cures.
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edition.cnn.com
5 things to know for March 31: Coronavirus, health, economy, trans rights, Hungary
Here's what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door.
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edition.cnn.com
31 States Now Have Stay at Home Orders Amid the Coronavirus Outbreak
Other states, including Alabama and Georgia, have only issued the stay at home orders in major cities.
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newsweek.com
Man claiming to have coronavirus kisses police car window after arrest, cops say
Police in Michigan detained a 26-year-old man outside a Mount Morris grocery store after he allegedly claimed he had coronavirus and was pushing several shopping carts inside the store and later allegedly kissed the window of a patrol car following his arrest, a report said.
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foxnews.com
Should We Wear Masks in Public to Protect Against Coronavirus? Here's What Who, CDC and and Johns Hopkins Experts Advise
The World Health Organization advises against the general public wearing masks unless they are sick or caring for those infected.
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newsweek.com
How I became a ballerina: Misty Copeland
From humble beginnings, Misty Copeland became the African American female principal dancer for American Ballet Theatre in New York.       
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usatoday.com
Letters to the Editor: California got rid of surplus ventilators and mobile hospitals? Outrageous
The decision to pare down California's $200-million stockpile of emergency equipment to save $5 million annually needs to be investigated.
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latimes.com
Letters to the Editor: So now we're finally mad about how unwalkable much of L.A. is?
Now that people have only their streets as a recreation opportunity, they'll realize how much nature we've taken from L.A.'s neighborhoods.
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latimes.com
Letters to the Editor: He's from Indian Country. Now, he worries about COVID-19's impact on his community
A public health graduate school says the effect of COVID-19 on his small community near an Indian reservation will expose deep inequality.
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latimes.com
Op-Ed: If marijuana is essential during the coronavirus shutdown, why not books?
As are bread and milk, gas and aspirin, alcohol and marijuana, books should be available, with safety precautions in place, at the usual places we buy them in our neighborhoods.
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latimes.com
Editorial: Hey, sheriff and supervisors, knock off your squabbling. People are dying out here
The last thing L.A. County needs during a coronavirus pandemic is a turf battle between the sheriff and the Board of Supervisors.
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latimes.com
New rulings amid coronavirus could force Trump to release migrant children and parents
A federal judge in Los Angeles gives the government until April 6 to deliver a plan to handle 6,600 children held in shelters and family detention facilities.
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latimes.com
Medal of Honor recipient Gary Beikirch: Coronavirus spurring Americans to truly live for others
On behalf of my fellow Medal of Honor recipients, I want all Americans to know that you are in our thoughts and prayers during this serious situation that we are all facing together.
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foxnews.com
Editorial: Migrant children shouldn't be detained, but especially not during a pandemic
A federal judge was right to order the Trump administration to move faster to release detained migrant children from conditions that put them at risk for COVID-19.
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latimes.com
Letters to the Editor: People in China and South Korea wear masks in public. We should too
One of the simple steps we can all take to prevent the spread of the coronavirus is to wear masks in public.
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latimes.com
'What if I am a carrier?' As the coronavirus spreads in Florida, a priest struggles to reach his flock
The Rev. Michael Sahdev, a 28-year-old priest, is caught between the pull to shelter in place and his calling to tend to his congregation.
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latimes.com
My Home Is So Messy Even Marie Kondo Can’t Help. Now What?
To tidy up your home, focus on the family that lives there.
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slate.com
Help! My Boyfriend Deliberately Coughed in My Face.
“He began ridiculing me for wearing a face mask.”
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slate.com
Letters to the Editor: Can anything convince coronavirus skeptics that they're wrong?
If social distancing has the desired effect, coronavirus naysayers will insist we overreacted. Here's how to show they're wrong.
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latimes.com
Op-Ed: Black voters pragmatically support Biden to beat Trump — but we deserve Sanders' big agenda
Trump is forcing black folks to vote defensively. It's too bad: For once mainstream politics, in the form of Bernie Sanders, lets us vote our ideology.
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latimes.com
Fast Carbs Are Killing Us
I stood in the supermarket a couple of years ago examining the Nutrition Facts label on a box of breakfast cereal and realized that it did not tell me all I needed to know about what was inside. In 1992, when I was the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, I helped design the now-ubiquitous food label. I believe it has made an important contribution to public health. Given the limits of our knowledge when we introduced it in 1994, we could not have done it differently. But it is no longer enough.[Read: More than half of what Americans eat is ‘ultra-processed’]The first ingredient on the cereal box: whole wheat. But is that wheat truly a whole grain, largely in its natural state? The label is silent on that, but the answer is almost certainly no—the chemical structure of the wheat in most processed foods has been transformed into a “fast carb.” The extremely long chains of starch in a whole grain are pummeled, using industrial techniques, into much shorter chains. When we eat them, they flood our complex digestive system with glucose molecules that are swiftly absorbed by the body. They come to us essentially predigested.This is a big part of the reason that in the 25 years since the Nutrition Facts panel appeared, the average American has continued to gain weight. Obesity rates have doubled, and in 29 states a majority of people are expected to be obese by 2030; more than half of the children living today will be obese by the time they turn 35. As much as I would like to reassure people that they can be both healthy and obese, the truth is that carrying extra weight catches up to us as we age, throwing the body into metabolic chaos. The devastating consequences of diabetes and cardiovascular disease are likely to follow.The Nutrition Facts panel focuses our attention on calories, fat, sugar, and salt. It lists total carbohydrates, but does not distinguish between the fast and the slow carb varieties. Yet the processed starch of fast carbs represents a staggering percentage of the calories we consume. Think of hamburger rolls, pizza dough, and fries. The average American eats more than 1,000 calories of rapidly digestible starches and sugars every day, and gets 500 more from the fats and oils added to many of these products. Starch serves as the carrier for much of the fat, sugar, and salt that we ingest, and like sugar, it is converted into rapidly absorbable glucose.This article was adapted from Fast Carbs, Slow Carbs: The Simple Truth about Food, Weight, and Disease by David Kessler.All of this undermines what should have been an American success story. We became an agricultural powerhouse because of the nation’s abundance of fertile grasslands, ideal for growing grain, and the industrial infrastructure that refines that grain into starch. But the processed carbs that became our main food source have also proved to be a missing link between obesity and metabolic dysfunction. That story has largely gone untold. Despite all the research on nutrition and disease in recent years, the effects of inundating our bodies with a constant stream of rapidly absorbable glucose—a poison hiding in plain sight—has not been well examined.Modern processing techniques involve intense heat and mechanical forces that destroy the structure of food. In addition, food manufacturers add fat and salt to highly processed carbs to increase their palatability, making them much softer and easier to chew and swallow. We thus eat more and we eat it faster. Because the nutrients never reach the lower part of the gastrointestinal tract, hormones that should trigger signals of fullness don’t get stimulated. (By contrast, less-processed foods retain their tight structure so that enzymes don’t break them down completely; we can still digest the food, but may not absorb all of its calories.)Fast carbs elevate blood glucose, and with it, insulin levels. When this happens repeatedly, especially in people who are overweight, metabolic pathways can become dysfunctional: Insulin stops working effectively, leading to insulin resistance, and eventually, diabetes and other disorders. Our bodies become intolerant to fast carbs, and by continuing to eat them, we further accelerate metabolic dysfunction.[Read: The startling link between sugar and Alzheimer’s]The dangers of processed carbs are amplified in an environment of positive energy balance—that is, a world in which bodies take in more calories than they burn. Historically, humans had to work hard to find food and were lucky to get enough calories to match their energy expenditures. When we burned at least as much as we consumed, processed carbs didn’t present the same problems—especially when those carbs weren’t as highly processed, because we didn’t have industrial techniques to shatter the food matrix so completely. But today, when many of us struggle with weight and confront disorders like prediabetes or worse, processed carbs are a disaster. It is shocking, but perhaps no surprise, that only about 12.2 percent of Americans are cardio-metabolically healthy, their blood pressure, lipid levels, blood glucose, and weight falling within current guidelines, a repercussion of these changes.If the physiology of all of this seems complex, the solution is not. The first step is to reduce your consumption of fast carbs and add legumes, intact whole grains, and other slow carbs to your diet. The second step is to engage in moderate-intensity exercise to ensure proper insulin control.[Read: Why whole wheat is better than white]Finally, be cautious about what you substitute for fast carbs. Generally, people who follow a low-carb diet by substituting saturated fat increase their levels of LDL particles—a form of cholesterol that can build up in the arteries—by an average of 10 percent. Given that we know the number of LDL particles are associated with atherosclerotic cardiac disease, that’s the wrong approach: Our goal should be to bring everyone’s LDL level down. Unfortunately, clinical trials tell us more about how to lower these levels through drugs than through diet. On a population-wide scale, though, we know the majority of heart disease can be eliminated by reducing people’s LDL level.From a tangle of intricate science, then, a simple strategy emerges. Our best path to health comprises three basic steps: limit fast carbs, exercise with moderate intensity, and lower LDL levels. Following these recommendations will change our nation’s health as significantly as reducing tobacco use has done.
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theatlantic.com
Dear Care and Feeding: I Despise Toddlers. Does That Mean I Shouldn’t Have Kids?
Parenting advice on becoming parents, social distancing from family, and father-son bonding.
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slate.com
Today is Equal Pay Day for women and it's not a day to celebrate
March 31, 2020 is Equal Pay Day for many women, but it's not a day to celebrate.
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edition.cnn.com
Why the U.S. Is Running Out of Medical Supplies
Health care is a private industry in the U.S., and hospitals are businesses designed to maximize profit, not respond to a pandemic.
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nytimes.com
POLITICO Playbook: What they told us about the coronavirus
And the latest on a potential Phase Four bill.
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politico.com